Photography by Nic Wing
Londonist was lucky enough to be the first customer to sample a cigar in the wonderful surroundings of No 1 St James’s Street when it opened its doors to the public on the day the election was called. This beautifully designed store and lounge is right on the corner of St James’s Street and Pall Mall.
Despite the recent changes to the smoking laws, the customers of "proper cigar stores" are allowed to sample cigars on the premises. The comfortable white leather chairs, plasma screen television and coffee here made it the ideal spot to watch the election drama unfold as ministerial Jaguars swept by outside.
This is the second new cigar store to open in London in the last few months and together with some fantastic new smoking terraces, London’s cigar scene is certainly looking up.
Like so many of London’s stores, this has a wonderful history. Louis Rothman, was born into the tobacco industry. His family owned a large tobacco factory in the Ukraine and he emigrated to London in 1887. At that time there was a demand for handmade cigarettes using the blends of Balkan, Crimean, Turkish, and Oriental tobaccos.
His first business was a small kiosk on Fleet street where he was so successful that by 1900 he opened a showroom on Pall Mall selling his own brand of Pall Mall Cigarettes.
The store has a substantial walk-in humidor stocked with a wide range of ‘New World’ and a somewhat limited range of Cuban cigars. The experienced staff are extremely helpful and will help with your selection and make you a coffee so that you can luxuriate in London’s most stylish new cigar smoking venue.
By Nic Wing